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Best Mic For Ringing Harmonic Male Vocalist Condenser Microphones
Old 13th May 2015
  #1
Here for the gear
 

Best Mic For Ringing Harmonic Male Vocalist

Greetings -

I'm a vocalist with a lot of operatic experience currently writing acoustic singer/songwriter stuff, and while I don't go from a whisper to a scream, I go from a whisper to a super sharp ringing tone.

My Blue Bottle with the B-6 capsule plus a FocusRite Liquid Channel makes my tone record under red-line, and with a solid signal, but it doesn't 'sound' like me, you know? Things are getting smoothed out so much the excitement drops off. I'm disappointed with this mic. It doesn't seem to excel at anything. I want a decent proximity effect when I'm 1/2 inch away with a windscreen. I want a clean, overdriven sound. I absolutely love saturation, and it's part of the sound I need going to tape. I used to like recording with an M-149 -- it sounded more round and smooth when I really dove into the harmonics. This is not a mic I own currently. Any suggestions on mics? My next step is to try to find an M-149. That's a tough one to track down.

Cheers!
Old 13th May 2015
  #2
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by latenightsavoy View Post
... I'm 1/2 inch away with a windscreen. ... try to find an M-149. That's a tough one to track down. ...
You'll have to back up - 1/2 foot (not 1/2 inch) & experiment with the dynamics of your vox at different distances.

[If you're really set on another mic, and feel that's the problem, you can purchase am M149 at any authorized dealer right now.]
Old 13th May 2015
  #3
Lives for gear
 
jmikeperkins's Avatar
I know it can be tough sometimes to describe sound but saying "I want a clean, overdriven sound" does not make a lot of sense as clean and overdriven are usually considered opposites. You complain that your Blue Bottle smoothes things out too much but you like Neumanns which are known to smooth things out? Every voice is unique and there is no one mic which is best for everyone. Although you can get many suggestions for different mics, ultimately you will have to listen for yourself and decide.

I love Neumann mics for vocals and the Neumann M-149 is a fantastic vocal mic. I think it's as good as it gets in a modern build mic. If you like mic, and you can afford one, then you should get it. I would consider buying one used to save money as they tough mics and I would not be concerned about a used one in good condition. Have you ever tried a Neumann U87? The M149 uses a different capsule than the U87 and you should try both to see which one is best for your voice, but you can't go wrong with the M-149.
Old 13th May 2015
  #4
Gear Addict
 

Have a listen to an Audix SCX25A, you would have to back off the mic a ways as it's not known for proximity but to capture a great performance in a good room it's killer. Its a very neutral mic so coupling with the liquid channel would give you lots of options.
Old 14th May 2015
  #5
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by latenightsavoy View Post
Greetings -

I'm a vocalist with a lot of operatic experience currently writing acoustic singer/songwriter stuff, and while I don't go from a whisper to a scream, I go from a whisper to a super sharp ringing tone.

My Blue Bottle with the B-6 capsule plus a FocusRite Liquid Channel makes my tone record under red-line, and with a solid signal, but it doesn't 'sound' like me, you know? Things are getting smoothed out so much the excitement drops off. I'm disappointed with this mic. It doesn't seem to excel at anything. I want a decent proximity effect when I'm 1/2 inch away with a windscreen. I want a clean, overdriven sound. I absolutely love saturation, and it's part of the sound I need going to tape. I used to like recording with an M-149 -- it sounded more round and smooth when I really dove into the harmonics. This is not a mic I own currently. Any suggestions on mics? My next step is to try to find an M-149. That's a tough one to track down.

Cheers!
So many things wrong here. Let me make a list to help you.

1) "super sharp ringing tone" does not sound at all desirable.
This is a problem if that's how you describe your tone.

2) "a FocusRite Liquid Channel makes my tone record under the red-line".
No. It is not the gear that "makes your tone record under the red-line", it's how the controls on the gear are set. You could easily distort the sh!t out of your recording with the gear you have but you don't because your gain staging is appropriate, not because of the gear you're using.

3) "Things are getting smoothed out so much the excitement drops off."
If your vocal is not exciting, it's most likely the performance, not the gear. Also, you mentioned that you liked the M149 because of how much smoother it is. Do you or do you not want smooth?

4) "I want a decent proximity effect when I'm 1/2 inch away with a windscreen."
If you're not achieving proximity effect at 1/2 inches from the mic, something is very wrong. Perhaps you have a high pass filter engaged without realizing it. Perhaps your mic is set to omni mode which will remove all proximity effect. Perhaps you are unable to properly monitor low end in your playback environment. Maybe your mic is broken. Either way, something is very wrong here.

5) "I want a clean overdriven sound".
This is an oxymoron. You cannot, by definition have both characteristics simultaneously.

6) "My next step is to try to find an M-149. That's a tough one to track down."
No. M149 microphones are super easy to find. They are not cheap but they are also not uncommon.

Best of luck to you on your tone quest. It is obvious that you have just begun your journey. I hope you find the sound you seek.
Old 14th May 2015
  #6
Here for the gear
 

[QUOTE=Axelrod;11044591]Let me make a list to help you.

Axelrod, you can't record omni with the Blue B-6. It's a cardioid capsule.

Yes, I can get a proximity effect at 1/2 inch, but I'm not satisfied with it. Sure, the problem could be with the performance. Obviously. It could be in a number of different places.

I'm just looking to hear what people think is a good mic to record male singer/songwriters. Of course that will vary by singer.
Old 14th May 2015
  #7
Here for the gear
 

[QUOTE=jmikeperkins;11043763]I know it can be tough sometimes to describe sound but saying "I want a clean, overdriven sound" does not make a lot of sense as clean and overdriven are usually considered opposites.

True. Overdriven is not the right term. Mic presence is the term I was looking for. I have listened to artists who went through the M-149 and it definitely has a distinct color. I've recorded with it. I know what I'll get with that mic. I think it's time to trade up.
Old 14th May 2015
  #8
Gear Maniac
 
Larry Villella's Avatar
.
My only comment is that there is a lot of value in the better boutique builders.


If tone and dynamic range are priorities so you can carve the tone-color you're after,
there are a number of smaller US and EU builders that simply offer stellar alternatives.

If the M149 worked why not contrasting that mic to a few of the 47 and 49 flavored mics.


You might find some surprises!
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